put the power of individual health choices back where it belongs with the patient and the physician. People have good sense, and if given more control of their own healthcare costs along with clearly presented options that include cost transparency (from both health care providers and hospitals who will have to compete for a savvy patient consumer), they will choose what is best for them. When the inflated costs injected by the government and the insurance industry are stripped out, it would lead to a more affordable medical system that will work well for the foreseeable future.
It can also be argued that evidence-based medicine has exponentially increased the cost of health care. In theory, the essence of evidence-based medicine is science. However, in practice it has become more about money. The system has led to a game where players like the pharmaceutical industry are given an edge. Over the past 10-15 years there has been a change in the parameters of our most common diseases such as hypertension, obesity and high cholesterol that has led to an exponential rise in the prevalence and the number of prescriptions written. These changes have led to a dramatic increase in both the number of people who meet criteria for treatment with prescription drugs and by extension the rising cost of healthcare. The question that has yet to be answered is why are we less healthy despite taking ever increasing amounts of prescription medication?
If we really want to get serious about decreasing the cost of healthcare, we need to have a conversation about the root cause. There is something intrinsically wrong about government policies that make it cheaper for us to buy junk food than it is to buy fresh fruit and vegetables. We will only be able to limit our costs by promoting prevention and wellness. Neither can exist until something is done about an industry that is given free reign to pursue profit over our health.
It has become clear that health care reform in its present state has nothing to do with delivering quality healthcare to the American people. The idea of universal coverage, with protection against insurance company wrongs (e.g., denying patients for pre-existing conditions and limiting the insurance company’s ability to deny coverage when you really need it) has been the sheep’s clothing cloaking a bill designed to destroy our healthcare system. In short, the proposed healthcare reform will doom us to a future that has the potential to make us sicker by limiting our access to screening exams such as mammograms, and limiting our access to physicians while making us pay more for the privilege. The vote in Massachusetts was a stand against those in the government who are bent on telling us that they know what is best for us. I have been astounded by the complete contempt in which those in power hold the American people. A majority of the people in this country think the healthcare reform effort is going in the wrong direction. Although the vote in Massachusetts made it clear that there was major opposition to the current bill, I have doubts that the voices of the majority will be heard and this debacle will be stopped.
After reading Bob Herbert’s column on how the Senate’s version of the healthcare reform bill is nothing but a tax hike that will adversely affect the middle class, It struck me how really awful this bill is for patients.
Since the passage of the Senate’s healthcare reform bill, those in favor of the bill have emphasized the fact that it will expand insurance coverage to approximately 30 million new people who currently are uninsured, stop insurance companies from dropping insurance to those who get sick, and prohibit caps on coverage in cases of catastrophic
Reports estimate that 50-60% of doctors will be sued during the course of their career. However, only 10-20% of those cases actually go to trial. Of those that go to trial, doctors are found innocent of malpractice 80% of the time. This demonstrates the fact that although the perception exists that there may be a
Although many Americans have seen and heard the insane debate over healthcare, almost no one understands what's going on. This is doubly true for the African American community, who is affected greatly by this debate and its outcomes. Most black bloggers aren't talking about it and black doctors are too busy to inform the community.
There is a major misconception about the reasons for the rise in the cost of healthcare. Procedures and the practice of defensive medicine have been described as the main reasons for the exponential rise. However, the reality could not be farther from what is portrayed on TV series like Nip/Tuck. The medical insurance industry has
Dr. Elaina George, a prominent ear nose & throat surgeon in Atlanta, has a bone to pick with President Obama. During various healthcare town hall meetings and press conferences, the president has villified doctors as the cause of the high cost of healthcare. But Dr. George doesn’t agree. As one of the few black doctors